Foster lateral thinking and pragmatic problem solving to unearth future talent in computer programming.
What teachers and students think
Computational and Algorithmic Thinking (CAT) will be held on Tuesday 23 March to Thursday 25 March 2021
Australian entries close: 1 March (paper), 19 March (online)
International entries close: 1 March (paper), 19 March (online)
The Computational and Algorithmic Thinking (CAT) competition is a one-hour problem solving competition designed to encourage student curiosity and promote multiple modes of thinking.
Neither teachers nor students will need computer programming ability, but the competition will help identify students’ computer programming potential—something that they might not normally have the opportunity to demonstrate.
The competition is an ideal activity to encourage students to solve real-world problems. It is suitable for any mathematics class and the process helps students become more confident as they take on interesting new challenges.
The competition has a mixture of multiple-choice and integer answers and incorporates unique ‘three-stage tasks’ that encourage students to develop informal algorithms and apply them to test data of increasing size or complexity. The original problems are designed to be quick to solve and highly approachable, and range in difficulty from very easy to challenging. Some questions test the ability to perform procedures, others require logical thought, while the more challenging problems require the identification and application of algorithms.
The CAT has four divisions: Upper Primary (years 5–6), Junior (years 7–8), Intermediate (years 9–10) and Senior (years 11–12). Teachers can register their students below.
This year we are introducing the Oxford University Computing Challenge (OUCC) which is available for students who are talented in computer programming. The OUCC builds on the principles used in the CAT competition and helps students develop their skills further to produce programmed solutions to computational thinking problems. The first round is open to all students who have competed in the CAT. Find out more information about the OUCC here.
Paper and online versions will be available. Register below
Teachers in home-schools are eligible to register as school coordinators and run our competitions. If you would like to do so, please download, fill out and return this registration form to this email address with proof of your home school registration in your state or territory.